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23 May 2013

that thing we don't talk about

i don't tend to harp on about body image. once or twice i have felt compelled to rant about particular aspects of my own body issues - and, considering this is my lifestyle blog, i allowed it. no one cares less than me about reading blogs where the author regularly brings up their weight issues or other body woes in order to get those same 'your gorgeous!' comments. that's shameless, and an obvious attempt to feel better about yourself. well, i don't know about you, but fishing for compliments has never really filled me with happiness.

let me tell you something. i used to be in a very unhappy relationship; although it ended on good (which turned to very bad) terms, the break up saw me let go of so much guilt and remorse - and along with it, a lot of weight. rather than spend time in the house we shared, i occupied myself by going to the gym. i controlled just about the only thing i could while living with someone i hated being around; my food. i ate healthy meals and i exercised a lot, because i had travelling on my mind, and was determined to look fantastic for all the london lads i was going to meet...

april to november 2010 at the smallest i have ever been :: katy perry for halloween // the skeeeeniest mirror ever //scrawny neck // going out //a vintage bridesmaid dress + floral crown // that last dress is a size  8. my gaaaad.

well, 6 months in to my new london life, i had just about piled it all back on. 9 months in, i definitely had (no thanks to boyfriend and his chips and chinese and beer loving ways!) - i was almost 10kgs/22lbs heavier! i suppose nobody but me really noticed. my clothes (mostly) all still fit, although i was having to buy much bigger bras. i think i filled out in areas that i'd tend to keep well hidden anyway (belly, ass, thighs), but i noticed. and, it affected me. i hated pictures of me that i'd not taken myself, i hated clothes shopping (my ultimate favourite thing!), and i especially hated the idea of seeing people from home see me like that.

so, two and a bit years in, i decided that enough is enough. about a month ago, i gave up the crap junky foods that keep me happy between meals, stopped binge drinking 'just cause' on a friday night, and... i joined a gym near work. since joining i have been going regularly with the girls from work, and - shock horror, i'm actually loving it!

on top of that, about two weeks after joining, i started the 5:2 diet. but, instead of 'feasting' for five days and 'fasting' for two, i have been eating what i like at weekends, eating in moderation (upto 1500 calories per day) for three weekdays, and 'fasting' (eating upto 500 calories only) for two days a week. my first day of fasting was rough. i had mentally been building up to it; i had reduced my calories the day before because i wanted to test myself to see how long i could go without actually feeling hungry. i did really well! i was fine. i thought i would nail it. but, when i woke up on fast day, i was starving. i know it was all in my head, but i genuinely was immediately disappointed in myself, because i knew i was going to fail.

and, i did. it was the day of the super bloggers event, and i did go over my 500 calories. not by much, but enough to prove to myself that i have an unhealthy relationship with food. i was angry all day. i was physically sad without my morning coffee. i felt nothing but hate toward every sip of water that i drank. it was if my body (well, my head at least) was not prepared to play things my way. and it's not as if i don't eat pretty healthily anyway - i do! i love my veg and salads, i grill everything in it's own fats, i rarely use oils or butters.. i'm just a snacker, and i adore food. everything about food; the smells, the flavours, licking salt off my fingers...

that day i struggled, and i had to spend the night being friendly to strangers. it was hard. so, the next time i planned to fast, i prepped a lot better and didn't let myself over think it all; i had a packet cappuccino for breakfast which was only 46 calories in total. it wasn't as filling as my normal morning latte, but it did the trick until the hunger pains kicked in around 11. then, i grabbed my pink shapers water that is only 5 cals, and sipped that through the morning. they say a lot of the time when you think you're hungry, you're actually only thirsty. so, by telling my stomach that it was thirsty for pink water, i felt like i was back in control! by 1pm, i was hungry. i had brought in a sainsbury's own soup that i absolutely love and have had a hundred times before. at just over 200 cals, it was filling and had me sat at around half my calorie intake for the day. after washing that down with a daily diet coke, i was feeling really happy! i hadn't gone without anything that i wanted, and my food had still all been really tasty. this day had gone to plan a lot better than the first! late afternoon, i caved and ate a banana. 90 calories, but the perfect thing to give me the pep up and energy needed to get me through the gym that night. plus, i knew that i could work those 90 cals off on the treadmill, which would still leave me with my 250 for dinner.

the gym that night was harrrrd. i was tired, and had little energy. i stayed only long enough to work off the banana (how insane does that sound?), then headed home. boyfriend had grilled up some lovely chilli-seasoned chicken, which i ate with a fresh green salad, with a lime juice dressing. all that was just over 200 cals, which technically meant that cookie that i ate around 10pm was totally ok. the next day, i was running late for work, and when i got to my regular coffee shop, the line was out the door. i could have cried. even my next favourite coffee shop proved too busy, so i headed to greggs. instant regret at eating that bacon and cheese twist just to get the terrible filter coffee. instant. regret.

may 2013 after a few weeks in the gym

this week is my second full week of the 5:2, and fourth week of a better, healthier lifestyle. i've weighed myself a few times, but haven't really seen a huge number result. one or two kilos lost since my original weigh in, but... i feel fantastic. my clothes fit better, my tights fall down even more than normal (if that's possible), and my body feels different. i've had a few random compliments, saying i look slimmer, which is a very welcomed result. also, i got my legs out. that never happens. a positive?

guys, i know i'm not fat, this isn't about being fat. this is about body confidence and being happy. give me another month, and i'm sure i'll be well on my way to being there again.

Add your comment

  1. I'm so glad you are doing things to be happy about yourself, rather than society being happy about you. If that makes sense? Anyway, you are gorgeous and I take my hat off to you for working your confidence back bit by bit :) It's a great thing to be confident in your image!

  2. it's great that there's people who do things like that not to look 'perfect' but to actually feel good about themselves and be healthy. I'm sure you'll get where you want to be :) xx

    1. thanks! i wish it was an instant result though!

  3. I completely agree with you about being healthier and being overall happy with yourself. That's what I make it about as well. I used to be really stuck to a number I wanted to be.. That didn't make me happy but rather frustrated.
    Instead of being 'skinnier' I want to feel/be healthier. So glad that you wrote this. Totally taboo for most.

    1. thanks pati! i just wanted to be honest (to myself as well!) about it all, and not harp on about weight loss for the wrong reasons! x

  4. Hey, great post! I just came across your blog and I love it!

    Feel free to check out my blog, we can also follow each other if you would like to :)


  5. Great post, good to read an honest account of this stuff... I've just started the 5:2 diet too (am on my second week now). It's getting easier, the first fasting day I did was horrible! I mostly like the fact that I only have to think about dieting two days a week.

    Liz xx
    Distract Me Now Please

    1. exactly! two days a week is easy - i find it hard once i'm at home cos i just want to snack all the time! i've just done my second week too :)

  6. Glad you're feeling great!!! I have to lose some weight too -- I'll look into this diet!

    1. definitely do! it's not for everyone, but i thought i'd give it a go, and it's really easy to stick to - you just make it work for you! x

  7. I have put so much weight on in the last year since getting really comfy with my boyfriend and having nights in with food and generally snacking ALL the time.
    So naturally i'm now insecure about my tummy, I've also jumped up from a comfortable C to a huge E!! I need to start 'working' out again, but it's finding the motivation...
    Fair play to you though Erica, fasting is horrendous! I eat when i'm bored, happy, sad, excited... you get the picture. Its HARD.

    I need to sort this. PRONTO.

    Thanks for this post! xxxxx

  8. I wish I had your self restraint. I have a bad relationship with food and have experienced both sides of the spectrum. I think I'm going to stay where I am for now, who knows, the belly fat may just melt away as I sleep.

  9. i'm going to tell you that you're perfect because that's exactly what i think.
    but kudos to you lady for going out and doing the damn thing. i need some of your motivation.


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